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neuromancer

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61

Monday, August 15th 2005, 6:48pm

Why don´t we all pop open a cold one and take a gander at Chapter 9. Chapter 9 Deckard thought for sure that any minute now his sanity would ask for the check and bail out on him. &quot;When the hell did this happen?&quot; &quot;About twenty-six standard hours ago,&quot; Orillion replied. Deckard looked at his chronometer and realized that would be nearly the same time he had accepted his own case back on Curacao. &quot;If that´s true, then whoever that guy is took possession of that case the same time I took mine.&quot; &quot;We know, and this makes our problem now threefold: First, we have no idea who this second courier is, or what he´s carrying; second, we now have two confirmed sightings of Samuel Maddox doing the same thing at the same time in two different places; and third, the real Samuel Maddox seems to have vanished without a trace. This has officially elevated into a potential catastrophe.&quot; Deckard put his head in his hands. &quot;I´m never getting out of here,&quot; he muttered. &quot;What was that?&quot; &quot;Nothing. Why don´t you just use your vast network of contacts and find out where this guy is? You found me, didn´t you?&quot; &quot;The only reason we found you was through mere serendipity,&quot; Orillion replied. &quot;The only reason we got this vid-pad is because one of our agents on Los Angeles was extremely lucky to see the Maddox impersonator and used her neural-net cam to record the transfer. After that she lost contact with the courier, and that was that.&quot; &quot;So why don´t you just hack into the docking ring records of Los Angeles and find out who left the planet after the transaction took place? That would at least narrow down the list of suspects. I assume you have people who can do that?&quot; Deckard wondered to himself what was possessing him to help the Order like this. Orillion looked over at Rianna and was silent for a moment. &quot;Damn,&quot; he muttered. &quot;I must be getting old to not think of that.&quot; Deckard flashed a sly grin. &quot;Captain Blair, report to Operations and have our computer people work on hacking the Los Angeles docking ring database.&quot; &quot;Yes, sir.&quot; She got up and hurried to the lifts. &quot;Mr. Deckard, I assume that Captain Blair told you of our offer?&quot; &quot;Yeah.&quot; &quot;The situation has changed somewhat. I do not want you to go to Malta under any circumstance unless I tell you. Your new mission is to help us find whoever has that other case. They have to be warned about what they may be carrying.&quot; Deckard´s head was spinning. In the space of a standard day, he had gone from the prospect of making the biggest payday of his life to taking part in something that could affect the entire Sirius Sector. What made it worse is he still didn´t know if he could trust the Order, or what they were telling him. &quot;Wait just a second there. How do you know what he´s carrying is dangerous? You don´t even know if what I was carrying is what you think it is.&quot; &quot;I believe we can answer that question for you now. Please come with me. I think you will find this interesting.&quot; &quot;And just where are we going?&quot; &quot;To the science labs. The analysis is almost complete.&quot; -------------------- &quot;It is definitely a toxin,&quot; the scientist said, &quot;and it is as deadly as we feared.&quot; He turned on a small holo-projector. &quot;This is a recording we made of our tests. The cells on the left are healthy cells that have not been genetically altered. As you can see, the toxin does not affect them. However, once we added cells that had been genetically modified by cardamine usage...well, see for yourself.&quot; The image flashed as a new group of cells appeared. The blue liquid that was the toxin spread slowly toward the cell mass. Deckard watched in horror as the toxin made contact with the cell memberanes and began to eat through them. In a matter of seconds the liquid had eaten through and was starting to attack the internal cell structures, It took only a minute for the cell mass to completely disintegrate. As the image faded, Deckard thanked his lucky stars that he had never tried cardamine. &quot;I must reiterate, that cell mass was from a one-time user. A complete mutation, such as the Outcasts have experienced, will have its cell structure destroyed much faster.&quot; Orillion turned to Deckard. &quot;What do you think now?&quot; Deckard made a decision. &quot;I can´t believe I was transporting death for millions of people,&quot; he said in a quiet voice. &quot;I´m not going to live with that on my conscience. I´ll help any way I can.&quot; &quot;I´m happy to hear that. Your help may prove invaluable. In fact, I think it already has.&quot; Rianna Blair entered the science lab. &quot;Commander, I have the records from Los Angeles.&quot; &quot;Good. Let´s see them.&quot; Rianna handed over a data pad. &quot;There were only three departures around that time. Two of those were Planetform transport trains. The third had a freelancer designation attached to it.&quot; &quot;Did we get a name?&quot; &quot;Yes, sir.&quot; Orillion looked over the data. &quot;John Deckard.&quot; Deckard´s head snapped around at the mention of the name. &quot;What did you just say?&quot; &quot;Do you know John Deckard?&quot; Orillion asked incredulously. &quot;He´s my brother.&quot; ---<i>Revenge is a dish that is best served cold... </i>
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Killa

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62

Monday, August 15th 2005, 7:19pm

Very nice, again, very nice. Keep up the good work. __________________________ What ever happened to the values of humanity? What ever happened to the fairness and equality? We´re at war but the reason´s under cover, the truth is kept quiet, swept under the rug. If you never know truth then you never know love. People are killing people are dying. Children are hurt can you hear them crying? Can you practice what you preach and would you turn the other cheek? Father, father help us, send some guidance from above, because people got me questioning &quot;Where is the love?&quot; It´s just not the same, is the entire world insane?
Signature from »Killa« __________________________ Okay, since someone who will remain nameless was offended by my last sentence, I`ve changed it. For those of you who just can`t wait, I`ve finally started a new fanfic, The Holocaust! __________________________ 4 8 15 16 23 42 Twenty bucks to whoever can tell me what the deal is with those numbers. I`ll give you a hint: They have somthing to do with a guy named Hurley. (Congrats to Taw, he was the first to get it right.)

Wilde

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63

Monday, August 15th 2005, 7:43pm

...my head is spinning... Great work!
Signature from »Wilde« __)_*()_( my cat was trampled by a packaderm...

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64

Monday, August 15th 2005, 7:51pm

I guess my only question is, why didn´t Deckard recognize his brother when he saw the video? You might want to explain that somehow. Maybe John was wearing a helmet or something. I dunno. Just seems a bit odd that someone will recognize a man he´s only met once, but not his own brother. Other than that, great job!
Signature from »Codename« Edit: Removed sig. Edited by - Stinger on on 12/30/2004 3:43:05 PM

J Dawg

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65

Monday, August 15th 2005, 8:06pm

Careful Codename... in my mind this story would continue in such a way that that wouldn´t matter. The courier may not be the real John Deckard..?

neuromancer

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66

Monday, August 15th 2005, 8:31pm

@Codename: In the previous chapter I pointed out the pilot was &quot;unknown&quot; meaning Deckard could not see who it was, and therefore didn´t know who he was. But you do make a good point...I guess I could have cleared that up in the actual story.
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67

Monday, August 15th 2005, 9:18pm

What can I say? The plot thickens and keeps me on the edge of my seat <img src=smilies/icon_smile_big.gif width=15 height=15 border=0 align=middle> Good work, neuro. <img src=smilies/icon_smile.gif width=15 height=15 border=0 align=middle>

neuromancer

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68

Tuesday, August 16th 2005, 2:30pm

Good golly, I´m on a roll. Enjoy chapter 10. Hopefully you like more surprises. Chapter 10 The Anubis fighter was absolute bliss to fly, Deckard thought to himself as he put his new ship through a few maneuvers, getting a feel for how she handled. He was en route to a little-know jump hole to Sigma-19. The Order had decided to patrol, and if necessary, blockade, access points to the Omicron Alpha system. Deckard would patrol the jump hole to Omicron Beta in Sigma-19. Two other Order operatives had been assigned to patrol access from Omicron Theta and Tau-37. They could only hope that John Deckard had not already slipped through. Deckard still could not believe that his brother could be a participant in this mess. John Deckard was three years his senior and had not handled the death of their father well. He had slipped in and out of trouble with the law, and finally disappeared altogether. Deckard had not seen his brother in nearly seven years. He was annoyed when Orillion asked him why he didn´t recognize his brother when he saw the vid-pad, and had replied testily that it was difficult to recognize someone you hadn´t seen in seven years by the back of their head. Still, he was quick to forgive when they authorized him to fly the Anubis. The Order had also taken the precaution of assigning him a new neural net ID for his protection, as proven by the attempts to get the case from him by force. Deckard´s joyriding was interrupted by an incoming call on his comm system. It was coming in on the encrypted frquency the Order had set up for this mission. &quot;Freelancer Epsilon Nine-dash-Nine, this is Base One, over.&quot; It took him a second to realize they were using the new ID they had given him. &quot;Base One, go ahead.&quot; &quot;We just received a report that the Outcasts have put a substantial bounty on your head, so watch out,&quot; Rianna Blair reported. &quot;Apparently they believe that the toxin is a weapon they can use and have no idea what it will do to them.&quot; &quot;That would explain the attack on Freeport 2, then.&quot; &quot;Probably. Just be careful when you get to the Omicron Beta jump hole. Omicron Beta is Outcast territory, and even with the new ID we gave you you should still expect trouble.&quot; &quot;What else is new? Any updates on Maddox?&quot; &quot;Nothing solid, but we are checking out a few leads. Don´t worry yourself too much about Maddox, we´ll find him. You just worry about stopping that other packsge.&quot; &quot;Roger, Base One. Anything else?&quot; &quot;Possibly. We´ve received some reports out of Freeport 9 of increased Corsair activity in Omicron Theta. We´re not sure if it means anything, but it´s an unusual move for them, especially in that system. Things are usually pretty calm there.&quot; &quot;You think the Corsairs have anything to do with this?&quot; &quot;I don´t think so. The Outcasts and Corsairs are always rattling sabers at each other. Maybe it´s just an attempt to piss the Outcasts off a bit. We´re just a little concerned that in could cause some problems for us should anyone try to jump to Omicron Alpha that way. Anyway, you stay focused on your job. Stay frosty out there.&quot; &quot;Copy that, Base One. Epsilon Nine-dash-Nine out.&quot; Deckard punched up his cruise engines and headed for the Sigma-19 jump hole. --------------- Three figures sat in the dimly lit conference room and looked intently at the man who had just entered the room. &quot;So, what news do you have for us?&quot; &quot;The packages have been dispatched, my friends. One of them seems to have disappeared, which is unfortunate. but not wholly unexpected. As you know, my friends, I do not believe in leaving loose ends. If the courier is found he will be dealt with appropriately. rest assured, my friends, that the second package is en route and will arrive shortly at its ultimate destination. Victory is near, comrades.&quot; One of the seated men spoke. &quot;I cannot help but wonder if this task could not have been better accomplished by our warriors? Surely they would not fail. At the very least it would not have cost us two million credits.&quot; &quot;I chose to hire freelance pilots because money is a powerful motivator, and also becuase freelance pilots landing on Omicron Alpha to deliver goods will draw very little suspicion. Yes, there was cost involved, but think of the rewards you will reap. This is your great moment of triumph.&quot; The three men looked at each other and nodded. Finally the one who had voiced his concern arose and approached. &quot;Your help has been invaluable to us, and we thank you. Rest assured that the Elders of Crete will reward you generously.&quot; ---<i>Revenge is a dish that is best served cold... </i>
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69

Tuesday, August 16th 2005, 2:54pm

OH MAN! Whoa! Damn Corsairs... didn´t think they had it in for the Outcasts *that* much. *heart palpitations as he eagerly anticipates the next installment*

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70

Tuesday, August 16th 2005, 3:27pm

<font size=1 face="trebuchet ms"><BLOCKQUOTE><hr size=1 noshade>He was annoyed when Orillion asked him why he didn´t recognize his brother when he saw the vid-pad, and had replied testily that it was difficult to recognize someone you hadn´t seen in seven years by the back of their head. <hr size=1 noshade></BLOCKQUOTE></font><font face=´trebuchet ms, Verdana, Arial, Helvetica´ size=2> Niiiiice. <img src=smilies/icon_smile_cool.gif width=15 height=15 border=0 align=middle>
Signature from »Codename« Edit: Removed sig. Edited by - Stinger on on 12/30/2004 3:43:05 PM

chupa

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71

Tuesday, August 16th 2005, 3:32pm

Awww, No way! The Corsairs are so much cooler than the outcasts. CHANGE IT BACK! CHANGE IT BACK! Naw, great chapter. I should have seen it comeing, I guess, but it struck like a bolt of lightning. Ph34r d4 C/-//_/p4c4br4
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neuromancer

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72

Friday, August 19th 2005, 11:26am

And now, fresh out of the oven, is Chapter 11. Chapter 11 The mindless patrol of the Omicron Beta jump hole left Deckard with plenty of time to think about events. He had been circling the jump hole for nearly two standard hours and had seen no one approach. Several Outcast ships had come through, however, but strangely enough took no notice of him even though he was very visible. In fact, they seemed to completely ignore him as they took off at breakneck speed for some unknown destination. His thoughts focused primarily on his brother. How had he become involved in all this? Where the hell had he been? Did he even know what he was carrying? &quot;Epsilon Nine-dash-Nine, this is Base One, over.&quot; Deckard keyed the comm switch. &quot;Copy, Base One. What´s up?&quot; &quot;Any unusual activity out your way?&quot; &quot;No inbound traffic to the Omicron Beta jump hole. Lots of outbound, though.&quot; &quot;What do you mean?&quot; &quot;I´ve seen several Outcast ships come through the hole and take off pretty fast. Ignored everything around them, too.&quot; &quot;Be advised that we intercepted a distress call from Ruiz Base in Omicron Beta. It´s an Outcast base.&quot; &quot;I knew that,&quot; Deckard replied. &quot;So what was the distress call for?&quot; &quot;Apparently they were calling for immediate assistance from Malta, then the transmission just died.&quot; &quot;Do you think the Outcasts making speed records here and the distress call have any connection?&quot; &quot;Possibly,&quot; Base One replied. &quot;It´s not like the Outcasts to run from anything.&quot; Deckard thought for a moment, and made a decision which surprised him. &quot;I´m going in to check it out.&quot; His declaration was met with silence on the other end. &quot;Base One, did you copy that?&quot; &quot;Roger,&quot; came the delayed response. &quot;We recommend you do not proceed. Orillion isn´t too happy with your idea. He thinks we should wait this out.&quot; &quot;Well, he´s not here to stop me, is he? Look, I´ve been sitting here for two hours and no one has gone into Omicron Beta. Have any of the other patrols picked up anything?&quot; &quot;Negative.&quot; &quot;So it´s possible my brother gave us the slip, isn´t it? Which means someone has to go in and find out what´s going on. Besides, technically I´m still one of the couriers.&quot; There was silence on the other end of the line for several seconds. &quot;All right. Proceed with caution, and if gets too hot, you bug out. Acknowledge that.&quot; &quot;Roger, Base One. I´ll call you if I find anything.&quot; &quot;Good luck out there. Base One, out.&quot; Deckard turned toward the jump hole and several seconds later disappeared in a flash of light. ---------------- Deckard had never been to Omicron Beta, and if he had his way, would never come back. The sickly green gases swirled about his ship as he navigated his way through the asteroids. His scanner showed absolutely nothing, which was surprising considering that a major Outcast base was in this system. Finally a blip registered on the scanner, and his navigation system identified it as Ruiz. No other ships registered in the area, and Deckard was beginning to feel uneasy. The gas clouds thinned out to reveal an large asteroid surrounded by several smaller ones that had been obviously set up as weapons platforms. There was no reaction as he flew by the platforms. Ruiz looked like it was still active. There were sporadic lights spread out over the asteroid, but there had been no reaction to his presence. Deckard decided to send out a general hail. He thumbed the switch and received no response. He tried the hail again, with the same result. He was less than a thousand meters from the base when he saw the docking bay doors open, apparently the response of some automatic system. Gripping his flight stick tighter and readying one finger on the weapons trigger, he slowly eased his craft into the gaping hatchway. ---<i>Revenge is a dish that is best served cold... </i>
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chupa

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73

Friday, August 19th 2005, 12:08pm

EEP! Much to short. MUCH MUCH to short. MUCH MUCH MUCH TO... Ah you get the idea. The only thing I don´t like about your fan fics, Neuro, is that your chapters are. (Come on everybody say it with me) MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH TO SHORT!!! Ph34r d4 C/-//_/p4c4br4
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Exodous

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74

Friday, August 19th 2005, 1:39pm

i ahte it too chupa, but i whould perfer short regular updates than highly seperated long ones <A href=´http://profile.xfire.com/exodous2´ Target=_Blank>[imghttp://miniprofile.xfire.com/bg/sf/type/2/exodous2.png[/img</a>
Signature from »Exodous« [url=http://profile.xfire.com/exodous2][img=http://miniprofile.xfire.com/bg/bg/type/2/exodous2.png][/url] [URL=http://phpbb-host.com/phpbb/?mforum=exo] My forum :D[/URL]

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75

Saturday, August 20th 2005, 3:05am

*left on tenter hooks after last chapter* eep! they´re going to give! need more, QUICK!
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neuromancer

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76

Monday, August 29th 2005, 6:59pm

Sorry for the delay, but here´s chapter 12 for anyone who´s still interested. Chapter 12 The hangar bay was still functioning, but it was completely devoid of activity. Deckard checked his instruments and saw the life-support systems on the station still seemed to be functioning. He climbed out of the cockpit, drew a blaster pistol out of his jacket and looked around. He could see only two ships in the hangar: his and what looked like a Hammerhead parked in a far corner. That meant that someone was still here, but who? He tightened his grip on the blaster and made his way to a corridor at the far end of the hangar, his footesteps echoing ominously in the eerily quiet base. Deckard made his way down the corridor where it ended at a T-junction. He paused for a moment, turned to go down the left corridor and stopped dead in his tracks. On the ground, ten feet in front of him, lay a body, face down, in a pool of blood. Deckard approached cautiously, weapon at the ready, but nothing happened. He stooped down and rolled the body over. What he saw nauseated him. He had seen the video of the Outcast and what the contents of the case he had carried had done, but nothing had prepared him to discover a real victim of the poison. The man was definitely an Outcast, as his cardamine inhaler lay inches away from the body. His pale, cold skin had the same melted look that the test subject had, and the last of the man´s blood was oozing from several open sores that had appeared all over the body. It was all Deckard could do to keep from vomiting as he got up and walked away from the man. He came across several other bodies as he made his way through the deserted corridors of Ruiz, each one suffering the same fate. Deckard´s thoughts raced through his mind. Somemone had obviously released the toxin here, but had they moved on to Omicron Alpha, and Malta? Was he too late? Deckard found himself in a control room looking out into space. There were two Outcasts slumped over computer terminals, their blood coalescing in pools under their chairs. He looked around and decided to check the station logs to see if they could offer any clues. He found an empty terminal and began to work the unfamiliar controls. As he worked he suddenly felt that he was not alone in the room. He gripped the blaster pistol tighter and swiung himself around and found himself looking into the cold dark eyes of his brother, who pointed a blaster pistol at him. &quot;Well, well, well,&quot; John Deckard said. The two men faced each other in silence. &quot;What the hell are you doing here?&quot; Matt Deckard demanded. &quot;I was just about to ask you the same thing,&quot; the elder Deckard replied, &quot;but I think I already know the answer.&quot; He moved to an empty chair, sat down, and motioned with his weapon toward the dead Outcasts. &quot;Pretty amazing stuff, isn´t it? I never thought I´d be a part of something this big.&quot; &quot;You mean genocide?&quot; &quot;That´s your opinion. I prefer to think of it as a greater cause.&quot; &quot;You think mass murder is a greater cause?&quot; &quot;Jeez, Matt, they´re only Outcasts! What´s your problem? Did you find religion or something?&quot; &quot;Look, John, this stuff doesn´t just kill Outcasts, but anyone who´s ever dosed on cardamine! This will kill innocent people, you hear me?&quot; &quot;How the hell do you know what this does?&quot; John Deckard said as he pulled out a vial from his pocket containing the blue liquid. He held it up between them. &quot;Because Maddox hired me to deliver the same stuff to Malta! Don´t you get it? We´ve been had!&quot; &quot;That´s a crock of bull!&quot; &quot;Oh, no,&quot; a third voice said from behind John Deckard. &quot;It isn´t.&quot; From out of the shadows of the corridor beyond a tall figure strode in, accompanied by several other men. As they emerged into the light of the control room, Deckard found himself looking at the imposing form of not one Samuel Maddox, but three. Two other men followd them into the room, dressed in the combat fatigues of the Corsairs. &quot;What the hell...&quot; Deckard muttered. &quot;So, here they are, my two couriers,&quot; one of the Maddox doppelgangers said. &quot;And brothers, no less. What irony. It really is too bad you both have failed. I had high hopes for you. Now if you will please drop your weapons...&quot; Deckard cursed and did as he was told. John hesitated, then did the same. Maddox smiled a cruel smile, then pointed a blaster pistol at John Deckard, firing a single shot that hit him in the chest. He fell out of his chair and lay silent on the ground. &quot;You bastard!&quot; Deckard yelled as he shook with rage. &quot;Don´t worry, Mr. Deckard. You may very well be joining him. I only shot him first because his curiosity got the better of him and he opened the contents of the case here rather than deliver them as I requested. I will spare you, for now, and give you a chance to explain your...delay in delivery and your arrival here.&quot; &quot;First of all, which one of you is the real Maddox? Second, why the hell are you with Corsairs?&quot; &quot;You are not in a position to demand answers to anything,&quot; Maddox said coldly, &quot;however, you do make a point. There really is no need to have three of me.&quot; Swiftly and methodically he loosed a single round into each of the two Maddox doppelgangers, who dropped instantly to the floor. Deckard looked at the remaining Maddox, shocked. &quot;Leave us, please,&quot; he said to the two Corsairs. They saluted and left the room. &quot;Now then,&quot; Maddox said. &quot;As I said before, I will give you a chance to explain before I decide whether or not to kill you.&quot; Deckard knew he would have to do some fast thinking and even faster talking if he were to get out of this alive. He quickly came up with an idea, and hoped to high heaven it would work, or at least buy him some time. &quot;I was jumped on a Freeport by an Outcast. He stole the case from me, and I´ve been on the run because I knew you´d find me.&quot; Maddox smiled in a way that Deckard didn´t like. &quot;I see,&quot; he said softly. &quot;So an Outcast overpowered you and stole the toxin. That is understandable, as the Outcasts have great physical strength granted them as a side effect of the cardamine. I can only wonder what this Outcast thought he would find.&quot; Maddox sighed. &quot;I´m afraid I must leave you now. I can´t say I´m convinced. Goodbye, Mr. Deckard.&quot; Deckard knew what was about to happen, but was too late to react. As he tried to jump to one side, the shot from Maddox´s weapon hit him in the left shoulder. He felt the searing pain lance through his body as he hit the floor. His last conscious sight before blacking out was of Maddox stepping over the body of his brother as he left the room. ---&quot;Open the Pod Bay doors, Hal, and I´ll give you a cookie.&quot; Edited by - neuromancer on 8/29/2005 6:24:54 PM
Signature from »neuromancer« ---"Smoke me a kipper, I`ll be back for breakfast."

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77

Monday, August 29th 2005, 7:28pm

Aw, rats. There goes our main character. <img src=smilies/icon_smile_sad.gif width=15 height=15 border=0 align=middle>

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78

Monday, August 29th 2005, 8:32pm

nahhh, he isnt dead, neuro said shoulder ;D
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J Dawg

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79

Monday, August 29th 2005, 11:21pm

I was hoping to get an update soon, my wish has been granted. I´m too much in awe to offer much constructive criticism now, I´ll give it a reread in a day, but excellent job as usual.

chupa

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80

Tuesday, August 30th 2005, 4:20pm

Wow, great as always neuro. Ph34r d4 C/-//_/p4c4br4
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